Looking for a ticket to Barack Obama’s inauguration? Ex-San Francisco Mayor Willie Brown had some advice recently: Ask a Republican friend in a red state. “I mean, how many people from Oklahoma think this is the nation’s biggest historical moment?” he mused. Think again, Willie—congressional offices red and blue alike have been bombarded by ticket seekers.
Some tickets are indeed going to out-of-state hopefuls, but more are going to locals. “I think it’s silly to assume there are no Democrats in a Republican district,” says one Arkansas rep’s spokesman. A spokesman for a Texas rep said they’ve received some 2,300 requests, 10 times their ticket allotment. She says she doubts any office has tickets to spare. “If they did, it would be the best-kept secret in Washington.”